Vocal Point 3/11/2019

Hi all

I’ve had several members say that Damien Demolder’s talk on Tuesday was the best that they have had at the club. I have to agree, he was entertaining, funny and informative. Not only that but we got the chance to lay our hands on some good gear from Lumix. Even though it went on to 10.30 no-one was rushing to get home. What a great night at Bromsgrove PS.

On Wednesday 9 of us met Damien in Birmingham for a day of Street Photography. We also got the chance to use some of the Lumix gear. Over a coffee, Damien discussed with us all what we expected from the day. It was pretty clear at the outset that most of us were outside our comfort zone. By the end of the day, we were taking candid street shots as if we had been doing it for years. Another fabulous day to live in the memory.

Some good news – Jenny Webster has had 5 Honorary Mentions on the Balkan Circuit. Our members go from strength to strength.

This Tuesday we have Vincent Scothern “From the Other Side of the Fence”. I have had a look at some of his work online and I’m blown aware by the quality of the images. It should be another good night.

The early session this week will be taken by myself. I deliberately didn’t set a programme for myself at the start of the year as I wanted to be flexible to what’s happening at the club. This week I will be looking at some photo-editing packages. There will be two free ones – Photopad and Photo Pos. Both are excellent software for photo-editing. I will also look at Affinity Photo – it’s not free but is a very strong package and comparable to Photoshop – without paying a monthly fee. If there is time, I will also advise on converting colour images to mono and how to achieve the impact that judges are looking for.

See you all on Tuesday.

Best wishes


Just a small correction to the early session content tomorrow. Photo Pad is no longer a free programme – even though the version that I have is.

I will focus on Photo POS (free) and Affinity Photo (not free)

Vocal Point 28/10/2019

Hi all

1. Just a follow on from the information on our presentation tomorrow with Damien Demolder. You may have received an email from Jan (Programme Secretary), advising you that Damien will be running a Street Photography Workshop on Wednesday. This will take place in Birmingham. It is open to any of our members, regardless of experience. There is a limit on the number of places, but I am pleased to say there is still a small number of places available. You don’t even need to take a camera, equipment will be supplied by Damien. The cost of the workshop is £99

Street Photography Workshop
This is a practical hands-on day of learning how to improve your street photography through seeing in new ways. Damien demonstrates a range of principles around using light, finding backgrounds and working in public areas, and then helps the group to find their own way at their own pace. It’s a day suitable for all levels of experience, and is certain to change the way you see and shoot – no matter what subjects you are usually interested in.
Cameras and lenses will be provided, so you only need to bring your imagination.

Participants will meet at in the Old Joint Stock Pub, 4 Temple Row W, Birmingham B2 5NY at 10am on Wednesday. This is a super chance to learn from a master of the genre and to try out some equipment in the process.

2. Tea rota. Most of you will know that we have implemented a tea rota for the first time – this avoids the same people doing the refreshments week after week. The new rota seems to be working well and has been well received by participants and the membership as a whole. It is hoped that most members will participate, however, there will be an exemption for anyone with mobility or other significant issues. The current rota was put in place to the end of this calendar year. In the next few days I will be putting out the rota for the year from January onwards. With the membership that we have it only means doing this on one evening in the club year. Thanking you in anticipation.

3. There is a vacancy for a Membership Liaison Officer on the committee. The role includes –

Acting as a communicator between the membership as a whole and the committee

Acting as a point of contact for members to discuss any problems or worries in confidence

Previous holders of the post had very little to do – maybe to deal with 2 to 3 issues in the course of the club year. Needless to say it helps to be a good listener.
If you feel that you would be perfect for this role, please let me know.

See you all tomorrow.


Vocal Point 27/10/2019

Hi all

There will be a lot I want to cover this week but I’ve decided to put it into two messages – hence Part One, Part Two should follow tomorrow.

What a great night for the club on Tuesday. Chris Fairweather was one of the most entertaining speakers that we have had – informative, entertaining a witty. His anecdotes in the first half were fascinating. And of course, his images told a story and provoked emotions. On his own admission, he said that they wouldn’t win any photographic competitions (too humble I feel), but that’s not what his work is about.

This Tuesday we are in for another treat. We have Damien Demolder – recognised as one of the best street photographers in the UK. If you get a chance, have a look at some of his work online – quite stunning.

The early session on Tuesday will feature part three of the popular Roger Lewis Foundation Course. Even if you have missed the first 2 parts, it’s not too late to attend and learn a lot more about the basics of photography.

Well that’s all for now, more to come tomorrow.

Best wishes


Vocal Point 21/10/2019

Hi all

I don’t have a lot to say tonight other than to promote our Bill Chambers Memorial Lecture tomorrow evening. This is a very special night in our calendar and deserves our full support. This year our speaker – Chris Fairweather – comes from the world of Photojournalism, covering a wide range of topics including sports photography, international news, commercial and feature photography.

We are aiming to start the talk at 7-45 tomorrow. Visitors will be arriving from 7-30. Due to the nature of the evening, there will be no early session tomorrow.

Looking forward to seeing you all then.


Vocal Points 13/10/2019

Hi all

Well, Bromsgrove Photographic Society goes from strength to strength. What a great night Tuesday turned out to be. Informative, entertaining and amusing. Several of our members communicating their passion for photography to us and I have no doubt we will aim to repeat it in future years. Many thanks to Jenny, Les, Nigel, Colin and Tony – and also to Jan for putting it all together.

This week we have our first print competition of the year and I’m looking forward to seeing a strong entry across the board. Before that, Beks and Michelle will be continuing with the Roger Lewis Foundation Course – so if you want to learn more about the basics of photography this will kick off at 7-00 PM on Tuesday.

Our club isn’t just about Tuesday nights. Yesterday 15 of us had a practical day out in central Bromsgrove doing a bit of street photography. Many thanks to our models – both members of the public and members of BPS who acted out their roles so naturally.

Please look out for future practical outings, In addition, we are aiming to run workshops on model nights and the return of Wendy Irwin to instruct us on her unique style of photography. Numbers will be limited on these days and will always be on a first-come, first-served basis – so keep looking out for further details.

It also gives me great pleasure to announce that Julie Hall and Michelle chance have had several acceptances at Shrewsbury Open Photographic Exhibition 2019. I believe that there may be others, but I haven’t received any further information to date.

Well, that’s it for this week, I will see you all on Tuesday.

Best wishes


Vocal Point 8/9/2019

I’m really pleased that we got off to such a good start this week. To date, we have 4 new members and there are likely to be more in the coming weeks

This Tuesday we have John Chamberlain FRPS MFIAP APAGB. John has been photographing wildlife for 35 years and his latest interests are mammals and birds. I believe that we are in for a treat.

Before that our Early Sessions Programme will kick off at 7-00 PM. The Roger Lewis Foundation Course is aimed at members who are relatively inexperienced in photography and would like to learn more about getting the best from their equipment. Whilst it is primarily for novice photographers, there is plenty of interest for members who would like to understand the basics of the photographic process in more detail. Rebekah Nash and Michelle Chance will be there to provide us with more information and detail on Nikon, Canon, PC Windows and Mac.

I would just remind all members – old and new – about the wealth of information that is present on our website – www.bromsgroveps.com. All the details of our programme, early sessions, competition rules, technical information, members galleries and much, much more are there. Please visit and bookmark us.

Finally, I am informed that there are likely to be road closures this week affecting the A38 and the New Road from that point into the heart of Bromsgrove. This could affect a number of members on their journey to and from Avoncroft. If so, please allow yourself plenty of time to attend on Tuesday.

See you all then


Vocal Point 2/9/2019

Hi all

We have a lot to cover today so I will keep things as brief as I can.

The Open Evening went well – we have seven visitors and I know several of them will definitely join as new members. A good night with a nice relaxed atmosphere – the social occasions are always memorable in Bromsgrove PS.

This week we kick off our winter season with our new members night. There is a lot on offer this week. We will look at the programme for the coming season in addition to an update on how the new PhotoEntry competition software will affect our competitions – most people will already have had a chance to trial the system and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

We will also spend some time explaining how the early sessions will work – we are resurrecting the Foundation Course for photography run by our past chairman a view years ago. This will give our members a chance to go back to the basics of photography and photo editing – but more on that tomorrow.

We will also be entertained by a short presentation on photographing models in the South of France from Jez Shimell. All this, and if we have time there will be a short quiz with fabulous prizes.

In addition, we will have the John Dignum sales table tomorrow. There will be a wide variety of items available. There are a number of Canon EF fit lenses available in addition to Speedlite flashes (dedicated for through the lens with Canon, but can be used in manual with other brands), tripods – including professional studio standard and studio lighting. All these items have been valued at “below Ebay prices”. If you have a Canon body then bring it along and try out the lenses. There will also be numerous small items such as photography books, small reflectors and lens filters. Most of these items will be available at a very low cost as well as free magazines and photo mounts. Much of the money raised will go directly to club funds (this helps keep your annual membership fee so low) with higher value sales going to the family of Roger and Gail Lewis.

You will all have received an email last week about the new refreshments rota. This was always going to be a difficult one to approach head-on. To date, I have had replies from 13 members – all supportive. We do realise that there are several members within the club who may have difficulty participating for various reasons and we will be sympathetic to individual needs. That said, the new rota will go live within the next few days.

To finish with I am pleased to announce the success of a number of our members in external competitions. In addition to the prior announcement last week of Colin Close and Len Pugh having a number of acceptances in the Wyvern International, Jenny Webster had 10 acceptances in a Canadian International competition with two gold awards, one Honorary mention and one Judge’s Award. Good work everyone.

Well, that’s all for now, I’m looking forward to your company in the new season.


Vocal Points 26/8/2019

Hi all

Phew, what a scorcher. We’ve just been camping with the grandchildren this weekend – the water fights were actually very welcome. It’s fair to say it’s been exhausting but nothing a good night’s sleep won’t cure. A few photos were taken – mainly in the shelter of the Wyre Forest and around a duck pond.

Just one main thing to mention this week – it is the last night of the summer season – our Open Night. We generated a lot of positive feedback at our event in the High Street recently and we hope to see a good number of potential new members. It would be good to see a good turnout to welcome people, The night will include print and PDI displays, along with a studio setup. Please bring your cameras, I’m sure we can find some volunteer models on the night. There will actually be some freebies – now that makes your membership worthwhile and we may have a small sales table. Let’s make it a happy social night and show our visitors what they can gain from joining us.

See you all soon.


PS prints are welcome tomorrow for display purposes on the night.

Vocal Points 18/8/2019

First off – did someone leave their umbrella at the stall yesterday? I have it in my car.
What a great day for Bromsgrove Photographic Society in the High Street yesterday. We received lots of public interest and quite a few serious enquiries from prospective new members for our new club year on 3 September. The icing on the cake was the support that we received from Karen May – Leader of Bromsgrove Council. Well done everyone for your support and many laughs on the day!  

We also raised the matter of having the use of an empty shop front to display our members’ work on a semi-permanent basis. This was received very positively by Karen – “your prints would look much better than windolened glass in empty shops”.So watch this space.

On the subject of prints – thanks to everyone who loaned us their work for the day. As you know, we have our open night coming up at Avoncroft on 27 August. We propose to put on a display of our work on the night. If possible, I would like to use these prints on the night. However, if anyone would like their work back beforehand, please let me know and I will ensure it is returned ASAP

Also a request for more prints from our novice workers for the Open Night. We would like our guests on the night to see a range of work from all of our members on the night – not just from our more experienced members. They can be mounted or unmounted and feature any subject. Also, any size will do. I will be at Dine India on Tuesday if anyone would like to bring their work along, or it can even be brought on the night of 27 August.
It’s an exciting time of year – not long to our new season. I look forward to seeing the results of your summer photography.

Best wishes


Vocal Points 12/8/2019

Hi all

Summer seems to be flying past. It only seems like yesterday that we held our awards night and now the summer is drawing to a close. No doubt, you have all had notification of our remaining events from Mike Norton and I hope to see you all at Tardebigge tomorrow evening. The weather hasn’t always been kind to us this year, however, the forecast for Tuesday evening looks good.

On Saturday we are promoting our society on Bromsgrove High Street. We have gained many new members through this event in recent years – new members are our lifeblood, fresh faces, fresh ideas and loads of enthusiasm. I have two requests –

1 We need prints to display a range of our work on the day. If you have any work you would like to include, either bring it to Tardebigge tomorrow, or contact me to make other arrangements.

2 We need help on the day. We will be there from 9 AM to 4 PM approximately. If you can spare a couple of hours on the day, please let me know.

Your committee has produced an exciting programme for the new season and I look forward to revealing all the details to you in the coming weeks.

See you all soon